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Old April 22nd, 2010, 10:26 PM   #561
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So if United and Continental merge, what happens to US Airways?
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Old April 22nd, 2010, 10:58 PM   #562
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Perhaps an American merger? I don't really see USAirways adding much to AA's network though.

Perhaps it will dissolve or merge with a non-legacy like Frontier, JetBlue, or Airtran or its assets sold off piecemeal.
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Old April 23rd, 2010, 06:31 AM   #563
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Quote:
http://www.chicagobusiness.com/cgi-bin/news.pl?id=37940

United-Continental combo would call Chicago home

By: Staff April 22, 2010 (Crain’s) — United Airlines and Continental Airlines are close to a deal that would create the world's largest airline, based in Chicago with Continental's Jeff Smisek as CEO and United boss Glenn Tilton as chairman, according to media reports late Thursday.............

Both Bloomberg and the Chicago Tribune reported that Continental CEO Mr. Smisek, 55, would lead the merged company, with Mr. Tilton in a non-executive chairman's role. The Tribune also reported the new airline would be headquartered in Chicago, citing a person close to the talks..........
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Old April 27th, 2010, 01:37 AM   #564
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American Postpones ORD-PEK

http://www.aviation-weblog.com/50226...jing_route.php
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Old April 27th, 2010, 05:53 AM   #565
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That's funny, I just saw a billboard on the way to the airport in Chicago this morning advertising the flight to Beijing. American is my airline of choice and I want to visit China later this year so I hope they get their shit together.
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Old April 27th, 2010, 11:12 AM   #566
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I read it from chicagotribune:

Quote:
American Airlines postponed the launch of its Chicago-to-Beijing service Monday just hours before the first flight was scheduled to depart O'Hare International Airport, because of a dispute with the Chinese government over landing rights.
....
Source: http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...,6324670.story
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Old April 28th, 2010, 06:17 AM   #567
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Quote:
http://www.chicagotribune.com/busine...,6211931.story

Continental board to consider merger with United

By Julie Johnsson, Tribune Reporter

9:57 p.m. CDT, April 27, 2010

Continental Airlines' board of directors is meeting Wednesday to review a potential merger with United Airlines, and the carriers are expected to decide within a matter of days whether to combine operations, say people close to the situation.

As in 2008, when the carriers came close to completing a deal, United's quarterly financial results may sway the deliberations, observers said. Spokeswomen for United and Continental declined to comment on any aspect of the merger reports.

United likely bolstered its case for a merger by posting its strongest first-quarter results in a decade Tuesday, topping most of its peers and beating analysts' estimates, though the company reported a net loss. That result is in contrast to two years ago, when directors of Houston-based Continental decided to end talks after United posted poor financial results, sources said.

But United's robust showing may complicate the carriers' efforts to wrap up a deal. United's shareholders could balk at any transaction that doesn't pay a hefty premium for the Chicago-based carrier, said analyst Hunter Keay of Stifel Nicolaus.

"We believe shares of United are undervalued, and we envision pushback from United equity holders should management propose a no-premium stock-swap transaction below $27 per share," Keay wrote in a research report Tuesday. United's stock closed at $20.51 Tuesday, down 8 percent on a day when Wall Street saw a broad decline. Keay said he thinks United shares are worth $33, with or without a merger.

Spurred by strong revenue growth, United Airlines narrowed its first-quarter net loss to $82 million, or 49 cents per share. That's an improvement from the $382 million net loss, or $2.64 per share, United reported a year earlier. Excluding certain items, United lost $92 million, or 55 cents a share, beating the 79 cents-per-share loss that analysts predicted.

United reported an operating profit of $58 million, excluding noncash charges. That's the strongest first-quarter showing in a decade by United, which typically sees passenger demand slow during the winter months.

United's passenger revenue jumped 15 percent, to $3.87 billion, versus prior-year results, although higher fuel costs offset much of the gain. But United executives were bullish on the airline's prospects for the spring and summer months.

"Two years ago, we laid out for you a performance agenda built around bringing our company to industry leadership with a clear sense of urgency," said John Tague, United executive vice president and chief operating officer. "Whether measured in on-time performance, revenue management or margin improvements, we are clearly delivering against that agenda."

United executives declined to directly address the merger expectations that have swirled around their carrier in recent weeks. Sources said the merged carrier would keep the United brand, which carries far greater name recognition overseas than does Continental.

The new company would be headquartered in Chicago and led by Continental CEO Jeff Smisek. United CEO Glenn Tilton would move to the carrier's board as non-executive chairman. The makeup of the rest of the management team is being decided, a source told the Tribune.

Meanwhile, United is proceeding with plans to build a new operations center and offices for 2,800 workers in Chicago's Willis Tower, where it holds a lease for about 400,000 square feet. The city of Chicago is providing $35 million in incentives to United, which plans to begin moving workers from its Elk Grove Township offices in October.

"We have absolutely every intention of making that move," Kathryn Mikells, United's senior vice president and chief financial officer, said Tuesday.

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Old April 28th, 2010, 09:31 AM   #568
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So, finally Houston and Texas leaders' effort to keep Continental Airlines HQ in Houston become publicized. I'm liking the bipartisanship effort, too:

Quote:
City leaders eager to hold on to Continental

By JENALIA MORENO and PURVA PATEL
Houston Chronicle
April 27, 2010, 10:01PM
http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/...s/6978844.html


Houston leaders said they want a chance to offer incentives to encourage Continental Airlines to keep its headquarters here if it merges with Chicago-based United Airlines.

There are indications that if the two carriers merge, the new company would be based in Chicago. Two years ago, the airlines discussed merging, and Chicago was planned as the headquarters of the new company until Continental ended those talks.

While no incentive package has been assembled yet, state and city officials said they were willing to match anything Chicago has to offer and simply want a seat at the table.

“We may be a little bit late to the dance because we weren't aware these talks were going to suddenly go on to the front burner, but we're definitely reaching out and we feel the board and chairman of Continental know what a great place Houston is and how much we have to offer them,” Parker said during a news conference also attended by state Sen. Rodney Ellis, D-Houston.

On Tuesday, Mayor Annise Parker, County Judge Ed Emmett and the Greater Houston Partnership sent a letter to Jeff Smisek, Continental's chairman, president and CEO, and Glenn Tilton, United's chairman, president and CEO.

As soon as news of merger talks hit the media, Parker said, she left messages for Smisek to let him know the city was willing to work with a merged company in order to keep its headquarters in town.

She said a potential merger was a business decision and that the city doesn't need to sell leadership at Continental about Houston's assets, but does need to persuade the leaders of United.

Gov. Rick Perry made a similar call, said Aaron Demerson, director of the governor's economic development and tourism division. If the merged company leads to job creation in Texas, the state could consider an award from the Texas Enterprise Fund among incentives, he said.
More at the link.
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Old April 29th, 2010, 10:37 AM   #569
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Interestingly enough American Airlines seems to be one of the more expensive airlines on this route. Sad.
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Old April 30th, 2010, 06:19 AM   #570
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Quote:
http://www.chicagobreakingbusiness.c...r-to-deal.html

United, Continental to announce merger Monday
Published on April 29, 2010 6:41 PM | Submit a comment

By Julie Johnsson | Wrapping up the corporate equivalent of speed-dating,

United and Continental Airlines are expected to announce Monday that they are combining operations to create the world's largest airline.
The transaction, which must still be approved by both airlines' boards, would be structured as a merger of equals, with neither side paying a premium for the other's stock, said a person close to the talks.

United's board is expected to vote on the deal Friday, which was reached in less than three weeks. Continental directors are meeting Friday to review the transaction's terms and are expected to vote Sunday.

The transaction is the first major strategic initiative undertaken by new Continental CEO Jeff Smisek, 55, who took the helm of the Houston-based carrier at the start of the year. Continental entered into talks with United earlier this month on the condition that Smisek head the merged entity, sources said.

United CEO Glenn Tilton, 62, will be named non-executive chairman of the new airline and is expected to serve on its board through a two-year transition period. The rest of the management team will be named later by Smisek.

Although the new carrier will continue to be called United and its headquarters will remain in Chicago, Smisek and other Continental executives hope Continental's culture of fostering good relations with customers and employees will prevail, sources said

That could prove a challenge, observers said. United's reputation was badly battered during its three-year bankruptcy last decade that also damaged the morale of employees, who took steep pay cuts and gave up their pensions to ensure the carrier's survival.

But over the past two years, United has placed greater emphasis on pleasing customers. Its planes are cleaner, many are outfitted with new interiors, and it routinely posts the best on-time performance among its network airline peers.

Continental, however, sets the bar for service among large domestic carriers, receiving the highest marks from passengers in Zagat's 2009 Airline Survey, by a wide margin.

The Continental and United brands will likely remain in the market until the carrier receives a single operating certificate from the FAA, a process that took the recently merged Delta and Northwest Airlines two years to accomplish. Over that time, Smisek and his team plan to work hard to ensure there is a uniform level of service at the new United, a source said.

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Old April 30th, 2010, 04:03 PM   #571
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So if the merger goes through there will now be a big three (4 if you include Southwest) with these hubs...........



American Airlines
Hubs
Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
O'Hare International Airport (Chicago)
Miami International Airport[1]
John F. Kennedy International Airport (New York City)
Focus
LaGuardia Airport (New York City)
Logan International Airport (Boston)
Los Angeles International Airport
Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport (San Juan, Puerto Rico)

Delta Airlines
Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport
Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport
John F. Kennedy International Airport (New York City)
Salt Lake City International Airport
Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport
Memphis International Airport

United
O'Hare International Airport (Chicago)
Denver International Airport
Washington Dulles International Airport
Los Angeles International Airport
San Francisco International Airport
Newark Liberty International Airport (New York City)
George Bush Intercontinental Airport (Houston)
Cleveland Hopkins International Airport
Antonio B. Won Pat International Airport (Guam)




Got to say I like the United's new geographic spread more then Americans or Deltas. I would take American's hub placemtn before Delta though.
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Old April 30th, 2010, 08:10 PM   #572
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Tremendous. Houston's loss will be Chicago's gain, just as they won Boeing from Seattle a few years ago. The geography of United's hubs will be the envy of the industry.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Table_o...tistical_Areas

Combined Statistical Areas of the United States of America

Rank Combined Statistical Area 2009 Pop 2000 Pop Change Core Based Statistical Areas

1 New York-Newark-Bridgeport, NY-NJ-CT-PA CSA 22,232,494 21,361,797 +4.08%
2 Los Angeles-Long Beach-Riverside, CA CSA 17,820,893 16,373,645 +8.84%
3 Chicago-Naperville-Michigan City, IL-IN-WI CSA 9,804,845 9,312,255 +5.29%
4 Washington-Baltimore-Northern Virginia, DC-MD-VA-WV CSA 8,440,617 7,572,647 +11.46%
5 Boston-Worcester-Manchester, MA-RI-NH CSA 7,609,358 7,298,695 +4.26%
6 San Jose-San Francisco-Oakland, CA CSA 7,427,757 7,092,596 +4.73%


The new United airlines will have hubs in 5 of the 6 largest metropolitan areas.


Last edited by Paddington; April 30th, 2010 at 10:14 PM.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 02:19 AM   #573
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I'd barely consider LAX a hub for United. It used to be, but I'd call it more of a focus city now. If UA and CO does merge Cleveland is out and DEN and IAH will loose lots of service.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 02:36 AM   #574
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WESTSEATTLEGUY View Post
I'd barely consider LAX a hub for United. It used to be, but I'd call it more of a focus city now. If UA and CO does merge Cleveland is out and DEN and IAH will loose lots of service.
I wouldn't be surprised if that in the next ten years that United's cuts up its Cleveland service and and Delta its Cinci and Memphis hubs and see all relegated in a similar manner to St.Louis/AA and Pittsburgh/USAirways. At the very least I envision all becoming diminished focus cities.

I find it hard to believe that Houston or Denver will lose much though and would bet in fact to see them grow long term. They may split up some of the load of the central Plain's states but generally they will stay just as strong as now. Both are growing metros (especially Houston) that are far away from United's other hubs and are able to service huge sub-regions. Denver with its new airport is ripe for steady domestic expansion and Houston will only serve to be more interconnected as a Latin America gateway in the future as well as serving the potentially third largest metro that could be in 30-40 years.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 05:28 AM   #575
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nomarandlee View Post
I wouldn't be surprised if that in the next ten years that United's cuts up its Cleveland service and and Delta its Cinci and Memphis hubs and see all relegated in a similar manner to St.Louis/AA and Pittsburgh/USAirways. At the very least I envision all becoming diminished focus cities.

I find it hard to believe that Houston or Denver will lose much though and would bet in fact to see them grow long term. They may split up some of the load of the central Plain's states but generally they will stay just as strong as now. Both are growing metros (especially Houston) that are far away from United's other hubs and are able to service huge sub-regions. Denver with its new airport is ripe for steady domestic expansion and Houston will only serve to be more interconnected as a Latin America gateway in the future as well as serving the potentially third largest metro that could be in 30-40 years.
Houston is not going anywhere. It is a cornerstone for Continental and has a massive network to Central Americaand the Caribbean.....larger than United has at any of its stations. It also has a pretty good sized South American network too. Also, DEN is really not a new airport, its 15 years old.

Denver is a battle zone with Southwest. But it would give the airline a large presence in the region (Colorado, Utah, New Mexico, Montana, Wyoming and Idaho). I think Cleveland is done.....small metro area that is losing population. Not to mention that is right in between both Chicago and Washington, D.C.

I like this merger, although I think it;s sad to see some legacies go.

This merger will give UA/CO a solid network to Europe from some great gateways in Newark, Chicago and Washington, D.C.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 09:18 AM   #576
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Looking at the map, I see that conceivably, if regulatory hurdles are cleared, that Air Canada's Toronto hub could substitute the Cleveland hub that is declining. Both AC and UA/CO are in Star Alliance, and, if governments make it happen, the Toronto hub could potentially be a US *domestic* hub, as well as an alternative for Newark, Chicago, or Washington.

Stranger things have happened before.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 04:49 PM   #577
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I think it will be interesting how this plays out on the eastern corridor, specially NYC.

I think logically United will depart most of its quasi-spoke flights from Laguardia and transfer them all to Newark (other then keeping direct flight from LGA to its other main hubs). This will open up the way for Southwest to rapidly increase its relatively new LaGaurdia presence along with a few other lower price airlines.

I also think more then ever Newark and JFK long are likely long term to coordinated along alliance lines with Star Alliance serving Newark and One World and Sky Team serving JFK. Ultimately Newark could see an influx of new foreign carriers to the airport.

Also I figure a few of the international flights that D.C. gets may be transferred over to Newark or scrapped due to redundancy.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 06:59 PM   #578
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nomarandlee View Post
I wouldn't be surprised if that in the next ten years that United's cuts up its Cleveland service and and Delta its Cinci and Memphis hubs and see all relegated in a similar manner to St.Louis/AA and Pittsburgh/USAirways. At the very least I envision all becoming diminished focus cities.

I find it hard to believe that Houston or Denver will lose much though and would bet in fact to see them grow long term. They may split up some of the load of the central Plain's states but generally they will stay just as strong as now. Both are growing metros (especially Houston) that are far away from United's other hubs and are able to service huge sub-regions. Denver with its new airport is ripe for steady domestic expansion and Houston will only serve to be more interconnected as a Latin America gateway in the future as well as serving the potentially third largest metro that could be in 30-40 years.
This is why the HQ should stay in Houston. It's only going to surpass Chicagoland in 30-40 years (Houston growth versus Chicagoland growth). The new Continental-United should grow with the city, where the future is. That's done now though.

IAH will be the Latin American gateway to the largest airline in the world. Don't see how it will lose flights. If anything, some domestic flights will be shifted to Denver. The only hub that will lose out is the Cleveland hub. Cleveland will most likely become a focus city and be a reliever airport for Dulles/Newark/O'Hare.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 07:43 PM   #579
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Houston has all those fat people though. Also, it may be growing fast, but how much of that growth is from Mexican illegals? I'd imagine most of the airline execs are a bunch of white guys and aren't drawing much from Houston's vast and fast growing Mexican underclass, so Houston's growth is a moot point.

Chicago is one of the world's ultimate corporate HQ locations. It's right smack in the middle of the North American continent. Illinois' business climate is actually relatively good, IMO. It's a short airline flight from regulators in Washington and financiers in New York that executives frequently have to meet with. This is why Boeing left progressive, hip Seattle and passed on fast growing Denver and Dallas to move to Chicago.

Houston has a lot of oil companies and continues to gain oil companies. But when HP bought out Compaq, they did not choose to make the corporate HQ in Texas despite Houston's growth and low cost advantages relative to San Jose. I think Houston is one of those places that a lot of people don't like. In much of Houston, you've got big 8 lane expressways with 3 lane service roads on either side. There's strip malls as far as the eye can see:





The executives at Continental might recognize that while Houston's cheap costs and cheap land might appeal to middle aged men, it might also turn off the young people fresh out of college that they're trying to recruit. Just a guess. Chicago has something for everyone, as long as you can put up with the cold winters. If you like Houston style sprawl living, you can go to Schaumburg. If you like the urban life, well, then Chicago definitely has a lot to offer.

Last edited by Paddington; May 1st, 2010 at 07:55 PM.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 08:26 PM   #580
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Spoken like someone will no knowledge of Houston.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paddington View Post
Houston has all those fat people though. Also, it may be growing fast, but how much of that growth is from Mexican illegals? I'd imagine most of the airline execs are a bunch of white guys and aren't drawing much from Houston's vast and fast growing Mexican underclass, so Houston's growth is a moot point.
Did you see the link I posted? Definitely not Mexican illegals. And as far as fat people, if we go by the unscientific Men's Fitness ranks, Chicago is ranked 13th. Something to be proud of, huh?

Quote:
Chicago is one of the world's ultimate corporate HQ locations. It's right smack in the middle of the North American continent. Illinois' business climate is actually relatively good, IMO. It's a short airline flight from regulators in Washington and financiers in New York that executives frequently have to meet with. This is why Boeing left progressive, hip Seattle and passed on fast growing Denver and Dallas to move to Chicago.
Illinois and Chicago's business climate may be good, but not better than Texas'. Boeing passed on Dallas because the North Texas cities were fighting against each other. Each trying to get Boeing to locate in their city, instead of looking at it as helping the region either way.

Quote:
Houston has a lot of oil companies and continues to gain oil companies. But when HP bought out Compaq, they did not choose to make the corporate HQ in Texas despite Houston's growth and low cost advantages relative to San Jose. I think Houston is one of those places that a lot of people don't like.
And the fact that Houston didn't try to even keep Compaq's HQ. And you know what? Houston still kept chugging along.

Quote:
In much of Houston, you've got big 8 lane expressways with 3 lane service roads on either side. There's strip malls as far as the eye can see:



So, you post two (old) images of freeways to prove your point? Wow. That's the real Houston huh? Or is this the real Houston?

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/101/2...13e06461_o.jpg

Image is too large to post.

And these photo threads:

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=181194

http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=181316

Quote:
The executives at Continental might recognize that while Houston's cheap costs and cheap land might appeal to middle aged men, it might also turn off the young people fresh out of college that they're trying to recruit. Just a guess. Chicago has something for everyone, as long as you can put up with the cold winters. If you like Houston style sprawl living, you can go to Schaumburg. If you like the urban life, well, then Chicago definitely has a lot to offer.
Why would cheap costs and cheap land turn of young people? And the Inner Loop Houston has gotten a lot more dense than it was back in 2000. I like what's happening there. Houston has something for everyone, too. The urban lifestyle may not be up there with Chicago (really, only NYC, San Fran, and DC can compare).
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